Friday, April 13, 2012


Relics will add another layer of strategy for players of Battle For Souls. Each side will have a stack of 10 unholy/holy relics that they can purchase at random for the cost of 3 unholy/holy points.

Each relic acquired will be worth 2 victory points and will provide another special ability for the player. Once purchased, a relic card is placed face up on the player's tableau. A relic card can be played every turn for the rest of the game, but only one relic card per turn. So a choice must be made once multiple relics are in play.

In the case of the holy relic Selaphiel's Thurible, the power to add an extra holy point to any soul with the heavenly virtue of patience is dependent on the player having the angel Selaphiel in play. So while the card has two dependencies (angel and soul), if these are fulfilled, the card will make it difficult for darkness to capture a patient soul.

The unholy relic The Book Of Vices is limited to two uses per game that can be tracked with the "Uses" tracker that is on the face of the card.

This card allows the side of evil to draw three more temptation cards into their hand, greatly increasing the chance of having a good hand to play on the current turn. As with all unholy/holy relic cards, it is also worth 2 victory points.

The cost of 3 unholy/holy points to add a relic is significant, but the extra power and victory points will make them a viable strategy.

I will be very curious to see in playtesting whether people choose to go for relics when they have the points, or if they choose to keep risk on by passing up a relic on their way to gaining a new angel/devil card.

From a design perspective, the balance will need to be perfect to make either decision viable. My thought (and hope) is that players will get relics early in order to build up their arsenal to a point where new angel/devil cards are easier to acquire.


  1. I like the ability on Book of Vices, but think it might need more than two uses. You're paying three unholy points to get the relic but can only receive a maximum of four unholy points. (And that's only if you produce 5-of-a-kind or five-unique-color hands on both activations.) You do receive two victory points for your trouble, but I'm not sure how to value those. What's a typical final score?

    I like the general idea of Selaphiel's Thurible, but it's worth noting that it is either very powerful (with Selaphiel) or not useful (without Selaphiel). There seems to be no middle ground. Are there other relics that provide benefits for having a coinciding angel/devil? If so, the games will probably involve buying relics first and then the accompanying character. That's not necessarily a good or bad thing, just an observation.

    Without knowing what all the angels do, I think it would be interesting to have an ability that allows you to look at the top 2/3/4 relic cards and choose one as opposed to getting one randomly.

  2. Yes, the thurible is either useless, or highly powered. I suppose the thought process is to make certain actions more beneficial to increase the sense of accomplishment. I think I agree that book of vices should have more uses. I also like The idea of looking at multiple relic cards. Maybe we can do a draw 2 or 3 and keep one whenever you purchase oa relic.


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